June 2009 news

New home, new look

Saturday, 27 June 2009 at 00:11 GMT

Welcome back! As some of you may be aware, IGN/GameSpy are sadly discontinuing their website hosting services, so all hosted sites had to find a new home. So here we are! The site now resides in its own subdomain alongside two other ex-Gamespy-hosted sites, so please be sure to update any bookmarks you may have to the new location: http://metroid.retropixel.net/. Old urls should redirect automatically to the new site, but the redirection probably won't last beyond August.

The move also gave me a chance to rework the look of the site and plenty of content, so pretty much everything you see here now has a new look. At the moment there's no longer any form of advertising anywhere on the site (and those random full-page ads are long gone), but we'll be sticking with FilePlanet for all the major downloads for now.

I've added new additions to the Artwork and Renders pages across the series (Metroid, Fusion, Zero Mission, Prime 1, Prime 2, Prime 3, Hunters, Pinball and SSBB) and added a new Concept Artwork section for Metroid Prime 3. All the videos are also now streamed right from here and presented in higher quality to the YouTube varieties. Most other changes are minor - just a few fixes and tweaks. I'm hoping that server load and performance will be greatly improved as well, so please let me know if you find any issues with the site.

Nintendo have also recently released a look of the packaging for the upcoming Metroid Prime Trilogy - and it looks fantastic! It's very reminiscent of the packaging done for Halo 3 and Gears of War 2 - the game is housed in a metal tin and plastic cover sleeve, and supposedly comes with a handy art book. Amazon UK is also noting a September 4, 2009 release for the UK, so it's good to see Nintendo trying their best to avoid the usual lengthy delay. See below for a preview of the snazzy box art (thanks to Joystiq for the images!):

Interviews and Metroid musings

Monday, 15 June 2009 at 03:15 GMT

The interviews with Yoshio Sakamoto and Yosuke Hayashi are far from over! The latest one comes courtesy of Kotaku, with further details like the relationship between the three arms of Project M, why Nintendo decided to go with a Japanese developer instead of Retro Studios, and how the team faces up to the challenge of trying to broaden appeal on the Wii platform (without using the ridiculously popular Balance Board).

But with Mr. Sakamoto at the helm I think we've got nothing to worry about:

"With Fusion, that game was very story-driven. In that game, I believe I was able to explain Samus as a character, as a person, not just somebody in armor. And I was not only explain Samus but the characters around herů with Super Metroid I showed, through her relationship with the baby Metroid, some of her maternal instincts. Between those two stories I feel I was able to explain Samus as a person. But because Metroid equals Samus, I'd like to develop her character further, as a soldier, as a human, also as a woman. That's what they're hoping to do with Other M."

Also be sure to drop by the Toronto Thumbs for Jamie Love's Being Samus and other Metroid musings article for a thoughtful read on where the series has been, how the elements all tie together and what meanings they have for the real world. They raise the potential danger of taking the series in a new direction (much like the original Prime's first-person direction), but after reading all these recent E3 interviews I think Samus is very much in good hands. Thanks to GoNintendo for the heads up!

Metroid: Other M trailer analysis

Saturday, 6 June 2009 at 09:13 GMT

Still enjoying the E3 trailer? Drop by the Metroid Database for a detailed scene-by-scene analysis of everything seen in the trailer.

IGN interview with Yoshio Sakamoto

Friday, 5 June 2009 at 02:36 GMT

IGN's Matt Casamassima sat down with Yoshio Sakamoto at E3 for a short interview about Metroid: Other M. We get similar details from this interview to 1UP's interview, but with a few extra details like the breakdown of Project M:

"In addition to the members of the staff from Nintendo and Team Ninja, as you saw in the trailer, there are a lot of cinematics that help us tell the story within Other M so we're also working with a company called D-Rockets, led by a director named Mr. Kitaura. In total, with the the three companies combined that make Project M, we have over 100 people on our staff."

It sounds like development of the game is coming along nicely. Sakamoto once again acknowledges that the idea for Metroid Dread might one day see the light of day, but with Other M to look forward to I think we've been spoiled enough.

On a slightly unrelated note, the scenes of Samus' encounter with Mother Brain in the trailer had me wondering... if Other M is set after Super Metroid, wouldn't it be sensational if the game actually began there and recreated the Zebes escape sequence?

New details for Metroid: Other M

Wednesday, 3 June 2009 at 23:32 GMT

Head to 1UP for a fantastic interview with Nintendo's Yoshio Sakamoto and Team Ninja's Yosuke Hayashi. Here's a short excerpt:

"My team is actually part of the handheld Metroid side...separate from Metroid Prime. So, when the Wii came out, it was my desire to create a Metroid game for this new console. But our roots were in the handheld -- more of the 2D realm. When we were thinking of different concepts and ideas that we could make into reality with this new Metroid, we realized that we didn't actually have the know-how to produce something that was 3D.

"It wasn't that I didn't think my team was up to the challenge, I just wanted to find the perfect partner to help make that a reality. So after consulting with Nintendo, I decided to approach Tecmo and Team Ninja with that proposal. I'm very grateful that Team Ninja accepted."

He also reveals the point in the Metroid timeline this game takes place: between Super Metroid and Metroid Fusion. Sakamoto also makes mention that a DS Metroid is still a possibility, so it looks like the elusive Metroid Dread could be out there somewhere. After reading this I'm even more excited to see what the collaborative effort between Nintendo and Team Ninja produces, so be sure to read the full interview!

Coverage begins for Metroid: Other M

Wednesday, 3 June 2009 at 12:52 GMT

This sure has been an exciting day! Nintendo's surprise reveal of Samus' new adventure has been a treat, and interesting info has already started trickling out.

Metroid: Other M

To get the ball rolling (no pun intended), we've started up coverage for the game with a selection of screenshots and the debut trailer itself. Picking the trailer apart frame-by-frame has also revealed a few more details, like the unmistakable scene of Samus' encounter with Mother Brain from Super Metroid, and what could be the game's intended release date (when the 2010 text appears, look closely for a 3 and 25 in the HUD - does that mean 25th March 2010, or is it simply decoration?). I can't get over the fantastic pre-rendered cutscenes - it looks like Nintendo and Team Ninja are taking very good care of Samus.

Metroid: Other M announced

Tuesday, 2 June 2009 at 20:58 GMT

At the 2009 Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles, Nintendo have unveiled a swath of new titles in their classic franchises - and a fantastic surprise. Metroid: Other M (Other Mission?) has been announced for Wii set for release in 2010. Co-developed by Team Ninja (the guys behind the Ninja Gaiden series), the game looks to be a superb mixing of the classic and Prime series, with both 2D and first-person 3D segments. Check out the debut trailer below:

The game appears to serve as a prequel for the entire series, as we can clearly see Adam Malkovich and his classic "Any objections, Lady?" line from Metroid Fusion. And Samus speaks! It's great to see a Japanese developer taking the reins from Retro Studios, and while the 2D classic Metroid game for DS still eludes us, this title looks to be a very pretty addition to the series. More information and media should pop up soon as time goes on. Exciting times!